How To Have A Daily Quiet Time With God
Discover the challenges and importance of investing in time with God, and a simple suggested pattern.
Our lives are filled with appointments and meetings, but there is one appointment that we find hard to keep consistent. And missing this one appointment produces guilt and failure in many men - it's having a daily quiet time with God. But this regular appointment with God doesn't have to be so daunting and should be a source of life, joy, truth, direction, and a means of deepening our relationship with the God who loves us.
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ONE | Jesus loves our company.
It's hard to comprehend but God created us for a relationship with him, and he loves when we choose to spend time with him. Often I picture God sitting in an empty chair across from me when I take time to be with him. After all, he's there with me. And I imagine myself talking to a close friend who happens to be the Creator of the universe. Men like Moses, Abraham, David, Joshua, and even Jesus inferred that they communicated to God in much of the same way. And often they prayed out loud just like they would any other conversation. These conversations were ways they invested in what was a primary and essential relationship for them.
We wouldn't dream of neglecting a close friend. And often we spend time with these friends because they give us life, connection, wisdom, and support. We need their company in regular doses. And it's no different with God. Except he's not just any man, friend, or relationship, he's the ultimate source of life.
Jesus put it this way. "I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me, you can do nothing…If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you. This is to my Father's glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourself to be my disciples." (John 15:5-8). Did you notice the operative word in Jesus' instruction? It's remaining - remaining in him. And having a daily quiet time with God is a vital method for "remaining in him and he in us."
TWO | Don't overcomplicate a quiet time with God
What kinds of things do you do with a close friend? You invest time with them. At times it's as simple as a quick phone call, to hear what going on with them and sharing what's going on with you. It is no different when we meet with God. We take some time alone with God, maybe 6 -12 minutes at the start of each day. And during this time, listen to him by reading a text from God's word, and talk to him in conversational prayer. Sometimes you might like to prepare yourself with a song of worship at the start as a way of praising him.
Think of your meeting with God as an alignment meeting to get each day started right. In quietness, bring your needs to him, confess your sin, ask for his help, learn from him through meditation on text and worship him as our Lord. Time with him daily will incrementally change your heart and mind, and as a result, you will become more like him.
THREE | Remember to keep it regular.
Our relationship with God is only as new as the last time we were with him. So keep it regular with a daily appointment. Sometimes it may be just touching base for a few minutes. And other times we may have more extended time with him, but don't neglect the best and most forgiving, loving, and gracious friend you will ever have - God.
FOUR | A suggested pattern for a quiet time with God.
[2-3 Minutes] Preparing for the meeting.
Start to slow by preparing for your quiet time with a period of silence, praise, or reflection. The goal in preparation is to move from thinking about the cares of the world to thinking about your relationship with God. During this time you will want to note where you are at personally and the current state of your heart, mind, and soul. It may be good to write out critical concerns in a journal or notepad so that you can move from "your self-concerns" to a posture of engaging God.
[2-3 Minutes] Listen to God by reading a relevant scripture.
Next, take a couple of minutes to find verses that speak to the concerns you noted. I love the Open Bible's Topic search tool for this: www.openbible.info/topics. Just type in a word or phrase, and you will find a ton of relevant verses. Stop at the one that speaks to you and listen to God's word to you. During this time just let God speak. Read the verse multiple times looking at God's instruction for your situation. It might be good to write out the action or steps God's word suggests you take.
[2-3 Minutes] Talk to God by sharing your needs.
Finally, talk to God about your situation, the direction scripture is leading you, and the challenges you are facing. The A.C.T.S. method is a great model for this conversation time. It begins with Adoration - revering God for what he has done. Next, Confess - this is to own the sin that God has brought to your mind during your reading. Next, Thanksgiving - appreciate God for what he has done or revealed to you. Finally, Supplication - ask God for what you might need for the day.
In 6-12 daily minutes, you will not only be centered for a new day, but you will deepen your relationship with the God of the universe who wants to be in a loving relationship with you. Try this pattern for 30 days and your relationship with God will be more profound and the outcomes unbelievable.
Vince Miller is a speaker, author, and mentor to men. He is an authentic and transparent leader who loves to communicate to audiences on the topics of mentorship, fathering, leadership and manhood. He has authored 13 books and small group curriculum for men and is the primary content creator of all Resolute materials. Contact Vince Miller here. His newest book is Thirty Virtues That Build A Man.